Butter Chicken

I’m told this dish originated in India, but I’m not sure of its region. No matter really because it’s so good when you make it you’ll say it came straight from heaven! I love the simplicity of an exotically spiced stew and it’s a recipe that you can whip up with confidence.

butter-chicken

 Butter Chicken

4-6 Boneless skinless, Chicken Thighs
Salt & Pepper
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 cup chopped Onion
1 cup Plain Yogurt
1/2 cup (one stick) Butter
1 14oz can Light Coconut Milk
2 tablespoons Tomato Paste
1 teaspoon Garam Masala
1 teaspoon Chili Powder
1 teaspoon Curry Powder
2 cloves finely chopped Garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated Ginger
Cilantro to garnish.

Chop the onion, garlic and grate the ginger then set aside.
Cut each chicken thigh into approximately three strips each.
Heat a heavy stew pot with a lid over medium-high then add the olive oil and chicken thighs then season with salt and pepper. Saute until brown.
Add in the chopped onion, garlic, and ginger. Saute until onions are softened and translucent.
Turn the heat to a simmer then add the tomato paste, yogurt, and coconut milk. Stir until well combined. Add the stick of butter. (it’s a seriously giddy moment when you add, wantonly, a whole stick of butter to the pot) 
Add the garam masala, chili powder, and curry powder.
Stir then cover. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thickened.
If you’d like the sauce thicker, turn the heat up and boil uncovered for 5 minutes stirring frequently.

Garnish with Cilantro and serve over Jasmine or Basmati Rice.

Print this recipe? butter-chicken

Beef Wellington

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Beef Wellington is a special Christmas Eve tradition, a delicious treat looked forward to all year. It looks fancy because it is fancy. There are many steps but none of them too complex and I can tell you from experience that it can all be accomplished whilst completely faced.

Beef Wellington

1 3-5 lb. Whole Beef Tenderloin Roast (approx 5-6 inches long)
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 tablespoon Butter
1 pint container of whole White Cap or Brown Mushrooms.
2 teaspoon Fresh Thyme Leaves
2 cloves chopped Garlic
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
6-8 slices Prosciutto
2 tablespoons English or Dijon Mustard
1 sheet Puff Pastry (defrosted)
2 Egg Yolks

For the Duxelles:
Place the mushrooms, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Grind the mixture until the mushrooms are finely chopped.
Heat a saute pan over medium-high heat and add the mushroom mixture and saute until most of the moisture is gone leaving a creamy paste. Spread the duxelles out on a plate to cool and set aside.

For the Beef:
In the same saute pan you’ve used for the duxelles, heat the olive oil and butter over medium-high heat and brown the tenderloin on all sides. Set aside.
Also, set aside the pan, with all those lovely brown bits, you’ve browned it in to make pan gravy later.

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Next, on a sheet of cling wrap layer the prosciutto so it is overlapping.
Spread the duxelles onto the prosciutto.
Lay the beef on next.
Spread the mustard over the beef.

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Layer the top with prosciutto and then wrap the cling around the meat encasing it all in a neat package.
Twist the ends of the cling film tight then place it into the fridge to rest for 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Roll out the puff pastry into a large rectangle (approx 10x 12in) on a floured surface.
Retrieve your beef from the fridge and unwrap it from it cling film.
Lay the beef onto the center of the pastry.
Brush the edges of the pastry with the egg yolk.
Fold the pastry over the beef to encase it.
Turn it over so the folds are underneath and set it onto a parchment lined sheet pan.
Brush the outside of the pastry in the egg yolk and make pretty score marks into the dough.(I go for a swirly pattern)


Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the temp measured with a meat thermometer in the middle of the beef is at 125-130F.
Rest the Wellington for 10-15 minutes before carving into thick slices.

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Serves 4-6 depending on how thick you slice it.

For the Pan Gravy:
Beef drippings from browning your tenderloin.
1 tablespoon Butter
1 tablespoon Flour
1& 1/2 cup Beef Stock
Set the pan on a high burner.
Add butter and whisk with pan drippings.
Add flour and whisk until well combined.
Add beef stock and whisk until smooth and thickened.
Serve over Beef Wellington.

Peaceful Cuisine

Japanese chef Ryoya Takashima has a great YouTube Channel called Peaceful Cuisine. I’ve been enjoying it lately and using it to wind down. Ryoya’s presence is very mellow and his imagery is simple and, well, peaceful. The (no music) versions of the videos have a subtle ASMR quality that’s very relaxing. You can also learn some fantastic vegan recipes.

Turkey Chili

Hi, American readers! Did you have a nice Thanksgiving? Lots of leftovers? Good!
When you’ve had all the turkey, cranberry, and mashed potato sandwiches you can stand, (what? you’ve never had mashed potato on your sandwich?) try this turkey chili it’s excellent for using up the rest of your leftovers! (for international readers bookmark this for Christmas!)

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Turkey Chili
For the Spice mixture:
2 teaspoons each: Chili Powder, Cumin, Garlic Powder, Dried Oregano.
2 tablespoons Flour.
Mix all ingredients well and set aside.

For the Chili:
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 cup diced Onion
1 tablespoon chopped Cilantro
2 cloves minced Garlic
1 can Black Beans
1 can Diced Tomatoes (with juice)
3 tablespoons Salsa
2 cups frozen Corn
4-6 cups shredded Leftover Turkey
1 quart Turkey Stock
2 cups Water
Salt & Pepper

In a large stew pot add the olive oil and heat over medium heat.
Add the onion, cilantro, and garlic and saute until the onions are translucent (about 5 minutes.)
Drain and rinse the black beans and add to the onion mixture.
Then add the tomatoes with the juice, the salsa, and corn.
Next, add the spice mixture. Mix well until all ingredients are well coated.
Add the turkey and mix well.
Add the stock and water and stir to combine everything. Bring to a low boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer uncovered for 20-30 minutes or until the chili is thickened and piping hot. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper.

Serve with cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and tortilla chips crumbled over the top.

Rituals

 For many, rituals represent a space in time carved out of our busy day just for us. It’s hard to do when so many need us and we’ve become accustomed to spreading ourselves thin. A little “me time.” It is, in my opinion, essential to staying healthy inside and out. For me, it’s my Sunday bath. Begun when my kids were very young it became 30 or so minutes in which I could reset and come back refreshed. If you don’t have a weekly ritual, try it! You’ll be better for it.
Rituals

 

Asian Glazed Salmon

glazed-salmon

Quick and tasty is what we want right now! Oh, and easy too!

Asian Glazed Salmon

4 4oz. Salmon Portions (skin off)
3/4 cup Soy Sauce
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 tablespoon Sesame Oil
1 teaspoon Fresh Ginger (grated)
2 cloves Garlic (finely minced)
Salt & Pepper
1 teaspoon Toasted Sesame seeds
Fresh Cilantro for garnish

Pat the Salmon dry with a paper towel. Season the fish with salt and pepper and set aside.

In a small bowl or jar with a tight fitting lid add the soy sauce, brown sugar,sesame oil, ginger & garlic. Whisk or shake to combine.

Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add the soy sauce mixture. Bring the mixture to a simmer then add the salmon.

Simmer the salmon in the sauce for 4 minutes a side.

During cooking, the sauce will reduce and thicken into a glaze. Spoon the glaze over the fish and add the sesame seeds and cilantro.

Serve with jasmine rice and steamed veggies.